Atlanta, Georgia (WiredPRNews.com) — Just when it appears that the preparation and consumption of chicken had to be closely monitored to avoid any contamination or infection of salmonella, it seems the produce aisle has been struck with the sickness as well.
A breaking report by the Associated Press as per health officials at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, an outbreak of the damaging disease has been reported in nine states including Texas and New Mexico and has was initially linked to uncooked tomatoes. Forty illnesses have been confirmed in these two neighboring states and have been identified as the exact same strand of salmonella “down to the genetic fingerprint.”
The CDC has reported 17 individuals have been hospitalized in Texas and New Mexico, though none have died due to the illness. “Another 30 people have become sick with the same Salmonella Saintpaul infection in Arizona, Utah, Colorado, Kansas, Idaho, Illinois and Indiana. CDC investigators are looking into whether tomatoes were culprits there, too.”
The common factor in all 40 cases of the Texas and New Mexico outbreaks are said to include raw large tomatoes — including Roma and red round tomatoes. “But no farm, distributor or grocery chain has been identified as the main source, said Casey Barton Behravesh, a CDC epidemiologist working on the investigation.”
As widely reported during the poultry fiasco, the infection embeds itself in the intestinal tracts and can be transmitted by eating foods contaminated with animal feces. Most infected individuals suffer from severe abdominal cramping, high fever and diarrhea within 12 to 72 hours after infection with a duration of four to seven days.
Though severe infection and death is possible, most infected individuals recover without treatment. “In Texas and New Mexico, the patients ranged in age from ages 3 to 82. Of the 40, 38 were interviewed. Most said they ate raw tomatoes from either stores or restaurants before becoming ill between April 23 and May 27. Another 17 cases are under investigation in New Mexico, CDC officials said.”
Wired Health Reporter